Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Worst. Paragraph. Ever.

Malkin tries to help us decide which side to believe in the Eason Jordan blowup.

Jordan's defenders say he was "misunderstood" and deserves the "benefit of the doubt." But the man's record is one of incurable anti-American pandering.

Jordan's the man who admitted last spring that CNN withheld news out of Baghdad to maintain access to Saddam Hussein's regime.
What he actually said was "Each time I visited, I became more distressed by what I saw and heard — awful things that could not be reported because doing so would have jeopardized the lives of Iraqis, particularly those on our Baghdad staff." That seems like an ethical tightrope - certainly not a cut-and-dried failure.
He was quoted last fall telling a Portuguese forum that he believed journalists had been arrested and tortured by American forces (a charge he maintains today).
Hey, maybe this demonstrates yet another reason not to use torture: Because when we forfeit the moral high ground, this kind of story enters the realm of possibility. Even probability: "Mr Jordan highlighted the case of al-Arabiya journalist Abdel Kader al-Saadi, who was arrested in Falluja last week by US forces and remains in their custody even though no reason has yet been given for his detention." Let's see...arrested in Iraq...held without apparent reason...how could we possibly believe he's been tortured?
In the fall of 2002, he reportedly accused the Israeli military of deliberately targeting CNN personnel "on numerous occasions."
It's official: Making accusations against a foreign military is "anti-American."
He was in the middle of the infamous Tailwind scandal, in which CNN was forced to retract a Peter Arnett report that the American military used sarin gas against its own troops in Laos.
Well, by "in the middle of" she clearly meant "promoted to clean house after." Oh, and "physically sickened by."
And in 1999, Jordan declared: "We are a global network, and we take global interest[s] first, not U.S. interests first."
And that's so clearly different from any other multinational corporation.

Look, Jordan clearly has a tendency towards impoliticness. (Yeah, it's a word.) And some of the things he's said and done have not necessarily met the most rigorous of journalistic standards. But Malkin's column is not exactly a smoking gun vis-a-vis the Davos remarks and Jordan's intent in making them

Edited to clarify point of view - due mostly to distractions from a hyper three-year-old (the best kind of distraction) - and remove a grammatical problem.